Book Excerpt: Fall Leaves – A Childhood Memory

The maple leaves carpeted our yard. My feet sunk in and I found myself up to my ankles in reds, oranges, and browns, rustling and crunching as I shuffled along the bottom of the hill. The ash-colored rake in my right hand stood a head taller than me, ready for action. Mom lent me a pair of her denim blue chambray garden gloves to protect my eight-year-old hands. I set to work at my end of the yard while Dad got going on his end.

Occasionally I’d clomp through the remaining leaves to the hill. Raking at an angle gave me perspective over our masterpiece. After a couple of hours of work Dad and I met in the middle of the yard and surveyed our work. We’d created an intricate trail system through the autumn leaves.

I left my rake standing in one pile of fall leaves and ran through the maze to get Kristen. Mom already had her bundled up in a brown, quilted corduroy coat, wool knit hat, and her pink sneakers. She held the railing and jumped down each stair from the single-wide trailer to the concrete patio and then hopped onto the grass. She ran towards the trail on the vegetable garden side of the yard. I ran to the opposite side, near where the shed and the forest met.

We shrieked and ran down the hill, laughing as we explored our leaf maze. Mom and Dad watched from the top of the hill. With each pass of the middle of the yard, we narrowly missed a head-on collision. We jumped into the pile that propped up my rake. Dry fall leaves scattered into the maze. We stopped for a bit to swing on the blue and white aluminum-framed swing set. Kristen’s cheeks and nose glowed bright pink.

 

I’m writing a career change memoir and I’d love your feedback as I post small ~300 word blurbs. What do you want to know more about? What works for you? What doesn’t work for you? Comment below or e-mail me.

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